Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Post 100!

Yeah, I know it is a little silly to be celebrating one hundred posts.  But hey, it is a milestone of some sort.  Won't be doing another celebration until 200,and maybe not even then.  But, one hundred is always something that is big IMHO.

So, two game session reports that I have to tell you all about.

The first was last nights foray into 4E territory.  It wasn't horrible.  It did sort of feel like I was playing a video game at times, especially with the combat.  Yet, I have been reached the point where I am over the edition wars.  I don't mind trying a 4E game and maybe doing a small campaign.  Yet, I don't know how it would last over a long campaign.  I could be wrong.  It was fun to blow off some steam and just hit things with magic missile.  (I asked to use the Errata of 4E, magic missile is much weaker, yet it always hits.)  Yes, I am playing a mage.  I will say that, unlike the old school gaming, yes mages can use their magic every round.  But, there is a part of me that thinks this detracts from the game.  Magic users of all kinds have been characters that are smart, will see how the battle is playing out and help with a spell they know, and this also goes to what they memorize beforehand, keeping in mind that they might not run into something that could be hurt with the standard magic missile spell.

Granted the DM running the game thinks mages in previous editions are weak, "Fighters can fight all day and mages blow their wad and have to sit in the back and cower."  I disagree with this and he and I won't see eye to eye on this.  That is his opinion and he is more than welcome to it.  I am not trying to say my opinion is better than his.  In 4E, he has a great way to allow wizards and fighters to be on par with each other.  In the older editions of D&D, you need to play the characters differently.  (Or not.  You could wade into combat, fight off your spells and then use your staff or dagger to great effect.)

Now, I am going off on a tangent.  Back to the 4E game.  We fought goblins, collected their ears and are starting to make a name for ourselves.  I look forward to seeing where this goes.

The other game, I just finished running.  It is my own game using the LotFP rules.  Very old school feel to it.  We don't know what happened to the fighter from the last session, so he slept throughout most of the game.  The cleric and the mage were made aware of bandits coming into the storm cellar of the Gallow's Inn.  (I put up a link, this is not what I used, but was inspired by this guys blog post of the inn.)  They blew open the doors to the room with the sarcophagus with kindling and flour.  Then, blew up the emerging thing inside said sarcophagus.  (It was an undead priest of an evil deity.)  And a note to my players, I am sure you can keep in game and out of game information separate.  They then were rewarded with coin from the offering in the sarcophagus and the two were able to con the innkeeper not only into not kicking them out, but offering them rooms.  Two of the bandits escaped with their lives, the third was  cousin to the innkeeper and was killed "by accident" by the innkeeper.  His ear was later collected for the bounty.  And, then the two PCs, along with a new NPC fighter by the name of Cooper, left for the town of Garret's Loop.  And, they wait for the next session.

Two incidents, one from each of the games, comes to mind as showing how different the two rule systems are for 4E.  (If it sounds like I am bitching about 4E, I am not.  Just this came to me and I thought I would write down these two thoughts.)

In the 4E game, while we were going through the tunnel fighting goblins, we came across a wooden platform two goblins were on.  They started to throw little fire pots at us.  I wanted to use my scorching burst on the platform.  Against a target, there is a d20 roll against the targets Reflex.  Yet, it is a wooden post.  Even with my bonuses, I didn't even hit a DC of 10.  So, the burst didn't do anything.  Ok, cool.  We did destroy the goblins anyway, but it would have been cool to set the thing on fire.

In the LotFP gam, my players wanted to set a door on fire and explode it with flour.  No rules, none to really look up.  I just used what I know about particles in the air, like aerosolized flour, when it meets fire.  It goes BOOM.  So, the door burst into toothpicks, the stone was scored and the PCs were far enough away that it didn't cause any damage.  The second time, when the PC mage tried to blo the lid off the sarcophagus and the undead thing was coming out, he panicked, threw the lantern and ran.  He was sent flying and hit the other PC and an NPC.  He took a little damage.  Everyone thought it was great!

One system, many many crunchy rules that are adhered to.  One system, fewer rules and ones that can be changed or ignored as per the DM's desire.  IMHO, I like the system with less rules more.

As for what I am working on, cause I did mention in a previous post that I would tell you about it on this one, well I guess:

This is a real Frankenstein type of game:

-Using Raggi's skill system, LotFP with some of my own ideas thrown in.
-Zak's stat, race and maybe even his class ideas.  (Still fiddling with this part.  Mostly with special abilities)
-The 1E stat caps.  Ex. being a female elf can't have higher than a 16 Str.
-2E Skills&Powers for some customization
-3E idea of skill points (you get so many a lvl, but it would be MUCH lower.)
-1E/2E secondary skill role (It would help to roll this and then figure out if the PC gets another pip in one of the skills.)
-2E weapon proficiencies
-1E spell lists, for every class.  So, there would be a seperate Illusionist class.  And, yes 1E spell casting, so priests and druids need to mem a spell.

This was just an idea I have been tinkering with.  I think I would use most of the 2E combat, though have to fiddle with that as well since there are MANY optional rules.

But, one thing I will use for this game system/game...which might or might not every come to fruition, is if a caster is knocked below zero hit points, your spells are wiped from your mind.  Combat is something that should be DEADLY, and even if you knocked unconscious, there is going to be some kind of trauma.

I will keep you all informed on if I will continue with this whole system idea.

1 comment:

  1. Congrats on hitting post 100. When you add it all up, that's a lot of writing that you've given to us. I appreciate the thought and effort that you've put into your posts.

    In regards to the 4E wooden platform, if you check the DMG p.65, there is a chart that lists object defenses. A medium sized object has a Reflex DC of 5 and 20 hit points. A 1st level wizard ought to be able to hit that on anything but a natural 1.

    But that's just damage. For catching it on fire, you probably want to combine your Scorch with a DMG p42 stunt.

    Here's how I'd have adjudicated your expressed intentions. First, cast the Scorching Burst at three targets (2 goblins, 1 platform), Attack v. Reflex. If goblins are hit, resolve damage normally. If platform is hit, resolve damage AND make an Arcana check vs appropriate DC on DMG p42.

    If the Arcana check succeeds, then the platform becomes a zone that inflicts level appropriate fire damage to anyone who ends their turn upon it. At the start of the caster's turn, the platform automatically takes the same degree of damage.

    The fire zone can be put out by a successful complexity 1 skill challenge, with each attempt at extinguishing costing a Move action. However, each failed skill check would automatically inflict the designated degree of fire damage.

    Of course, when the platform reaches zero hit points, anybody standing upon it goes falling.

    As a 4E DM, I'd be open to negotiation in determining damage and DCs, but I think this concept lays out the solid groundwork to allow for your intended action.

    In my experience, 4E handles improvisational situations as well as any other ruleset, but it does require a strong rules familiarity, finess in adjudication, and creative dialogue between players and DM. It's generally worked out farly well for me. YMMV.

    In any case, congrats on reaching 100 posts. Good gaming, amigo!